Reading Touch Screen Storybooks with Mothers Negatively Affects 7-Year-Old Readers’ Comprehension but Enriches Emotional Engagement.

Ross, Kirsty and Pye, Rachel E. and Randell, Jordan (2016) Reading Touch Screen Storybooks with Mothers Negatively Affects 7-Year-Old Readers’ Comprehension but Enriches Emotional Engagement. Frontiers in Psychology, 7. ISSN 1664-1078

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Abstract

Touch screen storybooks turn reading into an interactive multimedia experience, with hotspot-activated animations, sound effects, and games. Positive and negative effects of reading multimedia stories have been reported, but the underlying mechanisms which explain how children’s learning is affected remain uncertain. The present study examined the effect of storybook format(touch screen and print) on story comprehension, and considered how level of touch screen interactivity (high and low) and shared reading behaviors (cognitive and emotional scaffolding, emotional engagement) might contribute to comprehension. Seven-year-olds (n = 22) were observed reading one touch screen storybook and one print storybook with their mothers. Story comprehension was inferior for the touch screen storybooks compared to the print formats. Touch screen interactivity level had no significant effect on comprehension but did affect shared reading behaviors. The mother–child dyads spent less time talking about the story in the highly interactive touch screen condition, despite longer shared reading sessions because of touch screen interactions. Positive emotional engagement was greater for children and mothers in the highly interactive touch screen condition, due to additional positive emotions expressed during touch screen interactions. Negative emotional engagement was greater for children when reading and talking about the story in the highly interactive condition, and some mothers demonstrated negative emotional engagement with the touch screen activities. The less interactive touch screen storybook had little effect on shared reading behaviors, but mothers controlling behaviors were more frequent. Storybook format had no effect on the frequency of mothers’ cognitive scaffolding behaviors (comprehension questions, word help). Relationships between comprehension and shared reading behaviors were examined for each storybook, and although length of the shared reading session and controlling behaviors had significant effects on comprehension, the mechanisms driving comprehension were not fully explained by the data. The potential for touch screen storybooks to contribute to cognitive overload in 7-year-old developing readers is discussed, as is the complex relationship between cognitive and emotional scaffolding behaviors, emotional engagement, and comprehension. Sample characteristics and methodological limitations are also discussed to help inform future research.

Item Type: Article
Additional Information: This document is protected by copyright and was first published by Frontiers. All rights reserved. It is reproduced with permission
Uncontrolled Keywords: reading comprehension, shared reading, touch screen, scaffolding, developing readers, emotional engagement
Subjects: C Biological sciences > C812 Educational psychology
C Biological sciences > C820 Developmental psychology
C Biological sciences > C821 Child psychology
Departments: Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences > Psychology
Depositing User: Kirsty Ross
Date Deposited: 21 Nov 2016 10:22
Last Modified: 13 Dec 2016 11:10
URI: http://repository.winchester.ac.uk/id/eprint/356

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